The Amazon Kindle Fire may not be the best Android tablet ever made. But it looks like the $199 device may be on track to be the best-selling. Amazon hasn’t provided any detailed sales figures, but we already knew that the company had built “millions” of Kindle Fire devices due to strong demand.
Now Amazon has confirmed that since the product went up for pre-order 8 weeks ago, it’s consistently been the top selling product across all of Amazon.
The company says that in the weeks leading up to Black Friday Amazon had sole “millions of the new Kindle family,” which includes the $79 Kindle reader and the $99 Kindle Touch. Then on Black Friday, Amazon sold twice as many Kindle products as it did on the same day in 2010.
The Kindle Fire features a 7 inch, 1024 x 600 pixel IPS display, a 1 GHz TI OMAP4 dual core processor, and a customized version of Google Android 2.3. But it doesn’t have removable storage or cameras, includes just 512MB of RAM and 8GB of storage, and ships with access to tens of thousands of apps in the Amazon Appstore instead of the hundreds of thousands available in the Google Android Market.
But the Kindle Fire has a few things going for it that tablets from Acer, Asus, Samsung, Toshiba, and others don’t. First it’s cheap. It’s a lot easier to justify a $200 tablet than a $500 one, especially if you’re not really sure what you’ll use it for.
Second, the Kindle Fire ties in with Amazon’s existing digital music, book, and movie offerings so that regular Amazon customers will be able to access all of their content at any time — on the tablet or on a computer or different device.
Third, Amazon is one of the largest retailers in the world. When the company puts anything on its front page, it’s going to sell. Even if Amazon hadn’t launched TV ad campaigns and partnered with other retailers to get Kindles into bricks and mortar stores, the thing would probably be a hit.
I’ve had a Kindle Fire in the house for the last two weeks, and as long as you don’t expect it to do everything an iPad or higher-priced Android tablet can do, it’s a nifty little device. It can also be hacked to be even niftier if you want to install third party apps that don’t come from Amazon, root the tablet, change the home screen launcher, add the Android Market, replace the default keyboard, or make other changes.
Check out our full review for more details.